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Implementation Updates To Behavioral Health Administration

Concerning implementation updates to the behavioral health administration, and, in connection therewith making and reducing an appropriation.
2023 Regular Session
Human Services
Bill Summary

The act transfers certain administrative responsibilities from:

  • The behavioral health administration (BHA) to the department of human services (department);
  • The office of behavioral health (OBH) to the department;
  • OBH to the BHA; and
  • The department to the BHA.

The act repeals OBH as an office in the department.

The act requires the chief information officer of the office of information technology to invite the commissioner of the BHA to select a member to represent the BHA on the government data advisory board.

The act adds the commissioner of the BHA to the health equity commission.

The act states that the BHA is a health oversight agency charged with overseeing the behavioral health-care system in Colorado and discharging the BHA's duties.

The act authorizes the BHA to seek, accept, and expend gifts, grants, or donations for the purpose of administering any behavioral health program and service.

The act requires a behavioral health safety net provider to include services that address the necessary language and cultural barriers to serve communities of color and other underserved populations.

Current law requires the department of public health and environment to continue issuing and renewing behavioral health entity licenses until June 30, 2023. The act extends the date to December 31, 2023.

The act requires the statewide behavioral health safety net system to include services for adults who have a serious mental illness and children and youth who have a serious emotional disturbance.

The act authorizes the BHA to revoke or refuse to renew a behavioral health entity's license if the owner, manager, or administrator of the entity has been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor involving conduct that the BHA determines could pose a risk to the health, safety, or welfare of the entity's consumers.

The act requires the BHA to include in the contract for designated behavioral health administrative services organizations (BHASO) a requirement that the BHASO perform appropriate fiscal management and quality oversight of providers in its network.

Current law requires the BHA to create one regional subcommittee of the advisory council for each behavioral health administrative services organization region. The act requires the BHA to create a regional subcommittee structure as part of the BHASO to promote local community input pertaining to behavioral health service needs. The act adds certain members to the regional subcommittee.

The act requires the BHA to serve as the central organizing structure and responsible entity for jail-based behavioral health services.

Current law requires the commissioner to select and contract with regionally based behavioral health organizations to establish, administer, and maintain adequate networks of behavioral health safety net services and care coordination no later than July 1, 2024. The act extends the date to July 1, 2025.

For state fiscal year 2023-24, the act requires the BHA to safeguard partnerships between community-based behavioral health providers and rural hospitals by allocating money to community-based behavioral health providers.

To implement the care navigation program, the act requires the BHA to provide, directly or through contract, care navigation services and align the care navigation services with the care coordination infrastructure.

The act continuously appropriates money to the 988 crisis hotline cash fund.

Current law specifies the rights of a person detained by a certified peace officer or emergency medical services provider and transported to an outpatient mental health facility or facility designated by the commissioner of the BHA. The act expands the rights to any person detained whether or not the person is transported to an outpatient mental health facility or facility designated by the commissioner of the BHA. If a person detained is transported to an emergency medical services facility, the transportation hold expires upon the facility receiving the person for screening by an intervening professional.

Current law states the BHA is responsible for licensing mental health residential facilities on and after July 1, 2023. The act extends the date to October 1, 2023.

The act extends the date that behavioral health entities can legally operate without a license from July 1, 2024, to January 1, 2024.

The act decreases the general fund appropriation for use by the BHA and increases the general fund appropriation for use by the OBH for jail-based behavioral health services by $2,250,400.

APPROVED by Governor May 16, 2023

EFFECTIVE May 16, 2023
(Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)


Became Law


Bill Text

The effective date for bills enacted without a safety clause is August 7, 2024, if the General Assembly adjourns sine die on May 8, 2024, unless otherwise specified. Details